St. Cuthbert's House

northumbrian bed and breakfast

The Renovation - Introduction

St Cuthbert's House was built in 1810 as a Presbyterian Church. We have a fascinating book, written in 1910 by the (then) Minister, detailing the ‘first 100 years’. It’s a charming and important historical document, and it’s available for you to browse during your stay.

We bought the church, and the adjoining manse next door, which became our family home in 1998, when the church closed its doors. The small congregation which was meeting there up to that point still meets together in the Parish church, just a few strides down the road. They will give you a very warm welcome if you visit them, especially if you tell them where you’re staying!

The old manse has been a beautiful and happy place to bring up our family of four children - who have now all become young adults!

The church building was in poor condition, quite dilapidated. We wanted to bring it to life so that it might continue to ‘tell the story’ which it had become part of over 200 years. It remains the most prominent building in the village of North Sunderland (which is now really a part of Seahouses, rather than a distinct community), and we wanted it to continue to welcome visitors, whether they be casual passers-by, pilgrims, or searchers…

And so eventually we began the painstaking job of re-designing and renovating the church. There are too many episodes in the ‘planning permission’ saga, which took a couple of years to get through - but perhaps we can tell you some of those over a glass of wine...

Work began in summer of 2007, and was completed in time to welcome our first visitors in May 2008. With hindsight, the actual building job went remarkably smoothly. We attribute this to the team of local tradesmen who worked with us, almost every day for many months. It means a lot to us that those men had real connections to this place, and cared about what was happening here. David's family is mentioned in that history booklet as founder-members of the church in 1810, and Billy (who was 72 the year he worked with us here) had many stories about being here as a child in the village. So these men took a genuine pride in what we were re-building together.

Many guests have since suggested that it might have been a good project to feature on 'Grand Designs' but we think the relative absence of any tantrums and drama might have made for boring telly!

The bedrooms and the lounge/dining room have been named after some of the Celtic Christian men and women who first brought the gospel to Northumbria, and to Britain - Cuthbert, Bede, Oswald, Brigid, Hild, Aidan - and Columba, who never came here but who 'started it all' in some ways, from his monastery on the island of Iona...

We have retained as much of the charm and character as possible - like the pulpit - now a ‘balcony’ viewing area on the first floor - the communion table, and some of the original pillars and panelling. Loads of original timber, including the floorboards, were carefully removed and have been re-integrated into the new construction.

Featured Items

  • We're VisitEngland's 'Best B&B in England' for 2017!

    We're VisitEngland's 'Best B&B in England' for 2017!

    We were delighted to be shortlisted again, amongst the top 3 finalists from around the whole country, when we went to the VisitEngland 'Awards for Excellence 2017' ceremony at the Waldorf Hotel last week.

    But then we were absolutely thrilled to be awarded the top spot - the Gold Award, making us VisitEngland's 'Best B&B in England 2017' -  as we were in 2014 too.  To win this prestigious and highly-prized accolade a second time is very special indeed.

  • Clare votes us her No 1!

    Clare votes us her No 1!

    We've been enjoying reading Clare Balding's new book recently. She stayed with us here at St Cuthbert's House a while ago, but we were really taken aback when folks began to call to tell us that she mentions her stay at St Cuthbert's House in the book! Here's what she says, on page 201:
    'St Cuthbert's House went instantly to the top of my 'best ever B&Bs' list. I would describe it as a luxury small hotel with a family feel, but that might not fit on the signs.' Aw, thanks Clare!

  • Want to see what's so special about Northumberland?

    Want to see what's so special about Northumberland?

    Some time ago, we began work with our local Tourism Association to produce a video showing some of the things which make this area so very special.  Now the video is complete, and we are deeply grateful to the remarkable young film-maker Cain Scrimgeour for working patiently with us across the seasons, to create something very, very beautiful. This is 7 minutes long, and we urge you to settle back and watch...

  • Peter & Kathy recommend St Cuthbert's House

    Peter & Kathy recommend St Cuthbert's House

    Peter & Kathy told us that they'd really enjoyed their first stay at SCH, and so we asked them to tell you why...

    Reassure yourself - watch their one-minute video..

  • Check out our Tripadvisor Reviews

    Check out our Tripadvisor Reviews

    Check out our Tripadvisor Reviews, to find out what other guests have said about their stay.  But please - always book direct via our Book Online page to avoid fees.

    We're pleased to be included as members of the Tripadvisor 'Hall of Fame' - where entry is only available to businesses which have won Tripadvisor's coveted 'Certificate of Excellence' for five consecutive years.

  • Our Price Guarantee

    Our Price Guarantee

    You will ALWAYS receive the best possible price by booking direct with us - either by calling us on 01665 720456 or by following the Book Now menu item!  Beware that some large agencies charge you more - and they also take a large slice of commission from small independents like us.  Show your support for small businesses by booking DIRECT!

  • The Good Hotel Guide - Cesar Award!

    The Good Hotel Guide - Cesar Award!

    We're in the Good Hotel Guide!

    We are delighted once again to be included in the 2018 edition of the Good Hotel Guide, and especially proud to receive a Cesar Award from this proudly independent and highly respected Hotel review organisation.  They describe the Cesar Awards thus:

    We give our Cesar Awards to the ten best hotels of the year. Named after Cesar Ritz, the most celebrated of hoteliers, these are the Oscars of hotel keeping.


SustainabilityAs a famous frog once said: It's Not Easy Being Green. But we're trying to do the right things. Read about Our Sustainable Business.

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If you have any questions, please call us on 01665 720456 or send us an email or a booking enquiry.

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And if you'd like to keep in touch about upcoming house-concerts and be the first to know who's coming, then please tick that box too! We send a house-concerts newsletter most months to keep you up to date on the musical front.

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Copyright © 2019 St Cuthberts House. All Rights Reserved.
St Cuthbert's House, 192 Main St, Seahouses, Northumberland NE68 7UB (00 44) (0)1665 720456